What’s Hot 8/29/14

No Rush to Judgment on Net Neutrality (Multichannel News, 8/25/14) Surprisingly, the editorial board of The New York Times weighed earlier this month in with its proposed resolution of the Federal Communications Commission’s Open Internet proceeding, which still has several weeks before the window for reply comments is closed.  The initial comment round already has generated over 1 million responses, in part generated by a plea made on HBO’s Last Week Tonight With John Oliver to email responses in — with the Commission’s web address flashing prominently onscreen as the studio audience applauded loudly.

FCC won’t extend comments for Comcast-Time Warner Cable (The Hill, 8/25/14) The Federal Communications Commission denied a request from the Los Angeles mayor’s office to extend the deadline for comments on Comcast’s proposed $45 billion purchase of Time Warner Cable. The decision handed down in an order on Friday will mean Monday remains the final day for the first round of comments on the merger. Subsequent comment periods close on Sept. 23 — for comments replying to the initial batch of input — and Oct. 8, for final comments.

Amazon Buys Game Network Twitch for $970M (Wireless Week, 8/26/14) The e-commerce giant is buying streaming platform Twitch Interactive for $970 million in cash as it seeks to take part in video gaming’s growth as an online spectator sport. Twitch is a multi-channel online network built for a generation of people who not only enjoy playing video games, but find it entertaining to watch others who might impart tricks and tips for excelling at their favorite games.

California’s smartphone kill switch bill has been signed into law (The Verge, 8/25/14) A bill that requires all smartphones manufactured after July 1st, 2015 to include anti-theft measures if sold in the state of California was signed into law today. California governor Jerry Brown signed the bill, which was introduced back in February, and finally cleared the State assembly two weeks ago. Its aim is to make phones a less attractive target for thieves by requiring built-in tools that let consumers remotely lock, wipe, and disable the devices.

A top net neutrality defender is trying to poke holes in Mozilla’s plan for the open Internet (The Switch Blog, 8/25/14) It’s not often you see a top net neutrality advocate picking apart arguments from her own side. But anticipating critiques and addressing them is an important part of any debate, and the exercise appears to have uncovered some flaws in a proposal put forward by Mozilla, one of the open Internet’s biggest champions.

This year’s net neutrality debate has completely missed the point (Larry Downes, The Washington Post, 8/27/14)  Late last week, Silicon Valley congresswoman Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) launched a contest on Reddit to “rebrand” net neutrality. “All the jargon about net neutrality rules,” Eshoo wrote, “is making it difficult [for users] to know what box to check that advances their best interest.” Whether Redditors can come up with better jargon, and whether or not better jargon is really what’s needed, Rep. Eshoo is certainly correct that the term has lost all meaning — if it ever had any in the first place.